What type of western saddle do I need?

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What type of western saddle do I need?

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    09-10-2011, 03:34 PM
What type of western saddle do I need?

Hi everyone, I'm in the market to buy a western saddle. I do a little bit of cow work and roping. I also think I'm going to start taking reining lessons just for fun and sometimes I run barrels with my friends.. I know it's a lot but does anyone have any saddle suggestions? I was thinking a roping saddle? Thanks
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    09-10-2011, 03:38 PM
If you're looking for something that will be comfortable for long periods of riding like on trail rides, I wouldn't look at roping saddles. I grew up riding in those and never had a comfortable one. You might consider a ranch type saddle because they are tough enough for roping but still comfortable enough to ride in all day long.

I have one with a modified association tree that I absolutely adore.
iridehorses likes this.
    09-11-2011, 04:37 PM
I ad another vote to what Smrobs said. I have a siilar type saddle that I ride in when I wanna just chill
    09-11-2011, 09:03 PM
I have a Circle Y All Around saddle that is amazingly comfortable! It's not heavy enough to dally off a calf to for roping, but it's great for barrel racing, short single-day trail riding, or arena work because it's not very heavy.

I do have a roping saddle specifically for cow-working days. I cast my vote for my comfortable roping saddle! However, I had it custom made, so it fits my like a glove and I actually PREFER it for my weekend long trail rides.
    09-12-2011, 07:16 AM
Most specific use saddles are just that. As an example, a barrel saddle is not nearly comfortable enough for a long trail ride or for roping and just because people do, doesn't make it right for everyone.

A ranch saddle is a great blend of saddles and made specifically to be used to work cows and be ridden in all day. I like the A fork style because of the high gullet allowing it to fit a wider range of horses.
    09-12-2011, 02:39 PM
Citycowgirl, I've gotten some great advice about saddles in this thread: Barrel saddle for trail riding and cow work?. I've been shopping for a saddle for the past two weeks, and have *almost* settled on a Billy Cook roper (pending an impression pad check tomorrow). Though others may not find them comfortable, it's shaping up to be a great saddle for me and my horse.

My best recommendation is to sit on as many saddles as you can, and be open to a lot of different styles. A roping saddle was never on my radar (I was looking mainly at barrel and trail saddles), but when I sat on it in the store, it instantly felt good. And it's turned out to fit my horse really well, too. You can start to eliminate certain brands and styles of saddles from the pool just by sitting on a lot of them. If the saddle isn't comfortable for you, there's no point in even trying it on your horse. Once you find a style that you like, you can work on finding a tree that's going to suit your horse as well, so you're both happy.
Twister rox likes this.
    09-12-2011, 02:59 PM
Originally Posted by iridehorses    
Most specific use saddles are just that. As an example, a barrel saddle is not nearly comfortable enough for a long trail ride or for roping and just because people do, doesn't make it right for everyone.
Most newer saddles tend to be more multipurpose.

The key is to find a saddle that fits the horse and you.
    09-12-2011, 05:03 PM
Originally Posted by mls    
Most newer saddles tend to be more multipurpose.

The key is to find a saddle that fits the horse and you.
I don't understand the point of your reply. Newer designs use the terms, "all purpose" or general purpose" or "trail saddle" or "pleasure saddle". Those are the terms that makers use to capture a wider range of buyers.

A barrel saddle is still a barrel saddle, a roping saddle is still just that, as is a reining saddle. It is the design of the saddle - the type and material of the tree, the height and shape of the cantle, the placement of the leathers, etc., that dictates it's use. If I walked into a tack shop (or read an ad) that stated "this saddle is a good all around saddle that you can do most anything in", I would think to myself that this person is only trying to sell a saddle, not see to my needs.

You can have a barrel saddle that fits you and your horse to perfection and you still couldn't hold a cow in it. If a saddle is marketed as a barrel saddle, I would expect that to be the purpose of the design, and not to put in a 5 hour trail ride in.

Fit for you and your horse are the most important elements in general but if you don't take into consideration the design of the saddle, you may end up with something that will make you and/or your horse miserable on a long trail ride or break the tree on if you wanted to rope and drag something.
smrobs likes this.
    09-12-2011, 08:56 PM
Thanks for the replies everyone!
    09-12-2011, 10:33 PM
Can somebody please explain the difference between a team penning saddle, roping saddle and ranch saddle?? Thanks!

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